On the coffee table at the Calvin Klein Collection showroom this season was a book celebrating Semina: a little-known mail-art magazine founded and published by Wallace Berman, a California counterculture artist known as the father of assemblage art, between the years 1955 and 1964. It set the stage for Francisco Costa’s vibe-y Pre-Fall lineup of patchwork leather hip-slung flares, cropped and shrunken motorcycle jackets, and retro trenches. It’s rare for Costa to tap so directly into another time period—he’s usually much more circumspect in his influences—but it was refreshing to see the designer’s wild side. There was something just this side of feral about a coat whipstitched together from leather, suede, and shearling sheared to different lengths. Squint and you saw shades of Mad Max: Fury Road. We won’t be surprised if 2015’s Road Warrior remake sparks a trend for desert tones and raw, untreated skins on the Fall runways come February. If it does, it’s safe to say that Costa got there first with this outing.
Of course, it wasn’t entirely undomesticated. Costa recently launched a capsule eveningwear collection inspired by the red-carpet numbers he whips up for celebrities. There was plenty of polish to be found on the racks, too. Silk slipdresses were quintessential Calvin, as in tailor-made for the wilds of Manhattan.